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By Nick Wakeman

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Nick Wakeman

Shutdown kicks off 2019

On New Year’s Eve, leaders of the new House Democratic majority announced that they plan to vote on Thursday for a stopgap bill to fund the Homeland Security Department through Feb. 8.

The bill would then to go to the Senate, where the GOP still holds the majority. Most observers are predicting that the Senate will either ignore the House bill or vote it down. Of course, they could amend it and send it back to the House.

Republicans know there is no chance for President Trump to sign the bill into law because it doesn’t include increased funding for a wall along the border with Mexico. Democrats also are unlikely to support a bill that includes funding for the wall.

And there we are two sides far apart and few signs of a possible compromise.

So the partial government shutdown will likely continue this week. That affects not only DHS but the State, Commerce, Agriculture, and Interior departments.

Pressure will build on both sides to find some way to compromise, and eventually they will.

As many people smarter than me have said, there are no winners here. Both sides of the debate will look bad and have failed to heed the lessons of the past.

When it comes to the budget, it seems Congress is doomed to repeat the same mistakes over and over.

So where does that leave government contractors?

As I wrote in a blog just before the holidays, they should be talking to customers and finding out how the shutdown will have an impact. And there are longer term effects of clouding the government market with more uncertainty. This will impact investors and future employees and partners.

It’s a bad thing all around.

And the bigger worry is that this might just be the beginning of a tough, tough year of hyper partisan fights over budget and policy.

Happy New Year, everyone. To paraphrase the great Betty Davis: buckle up, it’s gonna be a bumpy ride.

Posted by Nick Wakeman on Jan 02, 2019 at 12:02 PM


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